Afterpay’s share price has broken yet another high as it heads towards the $100 mark, as a major regulatory cloud lifts.
The financial crime watchdog AUSTRAC revealed on Wednesday that it had concluded a 14-month investigation into Afterpay and would take no further action against the buy now, pay later company.
It had assigned an external auditor in June last year to investigate whether it had breached Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act (AML/CTF).
“In response to the findings and recommendations identified in the external audit report, Afterpay has uplifted its AML/CTF compliance framework and financial crime function, and completed all remediation necessary to ensure compliance,” the regulator said in a statement.
AUSTRAC said it had reiterated the importance to Afterpay that it comply with the law and “role in fighting financial crime to protect the Australian community from harm”.
Afterpay chair Elana Rubin said the company was “pleased” with the result and now better understood its obligations and how to manage risks.
The market was clearly pleased too, as Afterpay’s stock price rose by around 3% to over $97 a share in early trade.
The threat of a negative finding put the fintech darling at risk of major fines and regulatory consequences.
A 2018 AUSTRAC investigation found the Commonwealth Bank had helped drug traffickers move money using the bank’s ‘smart’ ATMs. It was a finding that would cost Australia’s largest bank face, not to mention $700 million.
More recently, Westpac copped a $1.3 billion fine for enabling child abusers to transfer money to South East Asia.
No such luck for Afterpay. The latest ride higher sets its market cap at more than $26.3 billion, more than Coles and Newcrest Mining, and making its billionaire founders even richer. On paper at least.
This article originally appeared on Business Insider Australia.